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AMD Banks on Rome to Boost Enterprise Revenue amid Weak Demand

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Nov. 20 2020, Updated 12:01 p.m. ET

AMD’s Enterprise business

Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) is seeing growing adoption of its EPYC server CPU (central processing unit) across cloud, HPC (high-performance computing), and Enterprise customers. This adoption drove its first-quarter revenue from Enterprise on a YoY and sequential basis.

At the first-quarter earnings call, AMD’s CEO Lisa Su stated that the EPYC’s revenue mix shifted from the cloud in the previous quarter to Enterprise in the first quarter as it added several customers across the aerospace, health care, automotive, and telecom industries.

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Lisa Su stated that AMD targets Enterprise customers through server OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) as they have longer qualification cycles because of dual qualification on the OEM side and the Enterprise side. A higher mix of Enterprise resulted in higher ASP (average selling price) and lower volumes, as enterprises do not buy huge quantities like cloud customers.

What Rome server CPU has in store?

Like Intel, AMD is seeing a decline in data center spending as cloud companies shift from buying capacity to absorbing the excess capacity they purchased in the first three quarters of 2018. It expects to tackle the slowing data center demand by gaining market share from Intel in the second half.

Lisa Su stated that AMD is set to ship its next-generation 7-nm (nanometer) Rome Server CPU in the second quarter for a third-quarter launch. She claims that Rome will deliver four times the floating point performance and double the compute performance per socket than its predecessor Naples. She stated that customers are showing interest in Rome and product qualification is also strong.

Lisa Su expects to increase its server CPU unit market share from 3.2% in the fourth quarter of 2018 to double digits in the next four to six quarters with the help of Rome, which is possible as Intel is unlikely to launch its 10-nm server CPUs before 2020, giving AMD a six-to-nine-month lead in the manufacturing node.

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